De Dolle Stille Nacht | Brouwerij De Dolle Brouwers

1,047 Ratings
De Dolle Stille NachtDe Dolle Stille Nacht

Brewed by:
Brouwerij De Dolle Brouwers

Style: Belgian Strong Pale Ale

Alcohol by volume (ABV): 12.00%

Availability: Winter

Notes / Commercial Description:
Alcohol has gone from 8% to 12% in recent years due to better yeast performance; according to Kris Kerteler.

Added by Todd on 03-25-2001

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Ratings: 1,047 |  Reviews: 514
Photo of Huhzubendah
4.32/5  rDev +4.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Split a bottle with my wife in our NYC hotel. Very nice.

Review #300

I was surprised that the color of this beer was not dark at all, but rather a hazy golden sunset hue. The beer has a medium-small white head that recedes pretty quickly, leaving a fair amount of lacing on the glass. Aromas consist of Belgian yeast, alcohol, and delectable fruity esters. Stille Nacht has a very bold and brash flavor, with a heavy alcohol presence. I would really like to sample some older vintages, as I imagine this beer ages quite gracefully. Despite the deceptive appearance, this beer tastes remarkably like a quad. The feel is very good and the heat is even enjoyable. This spicy beer was a tasty treat. I look forward to stashing a few of these away in the cellar.

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Photo of avalon07
4.47/5  rDev +8.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

A: Poured from a bottle to a tulip glass. Had a dark orange color and a thick, cloudy texture. There was a half inch of foamy, fairly long-lasting head. Good lacing.

S: A big, powerful aroma of yeast, malt, fruit, and some alcohol.

T: Tasted of peaches, Belgian yeast, malt, and caramel. Alcohol was present, but not obnoxiously so. A very complex flavor.

M: A highly carbonated beer with a smooth finish. Medium-bodied.

D: An excellent, drinkable beer.

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Photo of Jeffo
4.15/5  rDev +0.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Got this at De Bierkoning in Amsterdam.

From a bottle into a tulip.

APPEARANCE: Pours a big, fluffy, medium, three finger off-white head with great retention. Head slowly fades to a thick foam cap. Burnt umber brown in color, opaque, with lots of carbonation evident. A nice cap remains until the end leaving a little lacing down the glass.

SMELL: Some grainy malt with lots of spices. Some dark fruits, like raisins and dates, but the spicy notes are more prevalent. A touch of sweet caramel malt in the back as well. A bigger nose on this one.

TASTE: Sweet malts up front with touches of caramel in there, then lots of spicy notes thereafter. Hints of raisins and dates, and lots of spicy alcohol on the finish. Bold, big, and lingering aftertaste of spices, pepper, coriander, and warming alcohol. Definitely a winter beer.

PALATE: Medium body and medium carbonation, much fuller than their other beers. Creamy on the palate, goes down fine with a big alcohol burn at the finish. A little much on the burn, but the fuller body keeps it from being off-putting, which cannot be said for their other offerings.

OVERALL: By far the best beer I've had from De Dolle. The alcohol burn makes it a little tougher to drink, but it is still an enjoyable sipper to help warm you up in the winter. The palate also delivered on this one, which cannot be said for their other offering, so the alcohol burn was kept in check by the creaminess of the body. Check it out if you get the chance.

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Photo of Damian
4.67/5  rDev +13.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 5

Drank from a 330 ml bottle at Brasserie Erasmus, Brugge, Belgium
1987 vintage
Served in a wine glass

The twenty-three year old bottle opened with a loud "psst." A terrific sign already. A fizzy, one-finger head capped the liquid but it quickly dissolved to reveal a gorgeous, crystal clear amber body. The beer very much resembled a spirit.

The aroma was simply mesmerizing. Image the best port or madiera you have ever smelled and this is what you have here. Tons of malt sugars, dark fruits and spices. Plums and raisins were definitely noticeable. Some alcohol warmth was detectible as well.

Slight metallic and oxidative notes greeted the palate up front but both were rather unobtrusive. As the beer opened up, these small shortcomings were barely perceivable. The overall flavor profile was malty rich and super smooth. Lots of caramel, toffee and nuttiness. As with the nose, the port characteristics were obvious. A bit of alcohol warmth came through on the remarkably crisp, off-dry finish. Call me crazy, but I even picked up a touch of earthy hops as well.

The mouthfeel was syrupy, yet not overly so. As expected, the carbonation was very mild. Even this minute amount of fizz helped the beer from becoming cloying.

Drinkability was simply off the charts. The twenty-three years of age on this brew made the 12% ABV practically indecipherable.

I feel privileged to have had the opportunity to sample such an amazing beer. Kudos to the brewers at De Dolle for making such a fantastic elixir and to the folks at Erasmus for presenting this beer to me in optimal condition. I simply cannot have imagined a better way to finish my meal. Drinking this was surely the highlight of my Belgian beer odyssey.

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Photo of BeerForMuscle
4.23/5  rDev +2.7%
look: 3.75 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4

A - Nice looking light amber body. Smaller patchy cream head.

S - Smells of different light fruits and definate warm spicy alcohol notes.

T - Big bold flavor in this brew. For me it tastes like a lightly caramel sprayed spicy green apple that has been sitting in warm alcohol. Herbal spice notes in the background. How can you go wrong with that? Fruity, sweet, tart, warm, spicy.

M - Smooth mouthfeel with a crisp alcohol bite. It slides right down. Nice carbonation and aftertaste as well. Dry spicy finish.

D - This beer is smooth but sharp. Not sure have more than 2. This one should be savored for all its goodness.

Notes - Let's give credit to De Dolle. This brewery makes real quality beers. Ive yet to be disapointed.

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Photo of azorie
4.7/5  rDev +14.1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

2006 vintage, lucky to have quite a few of these hanging round the state, so I picked up all I could find last week in grand tour of the state.

A - Poured the beer into tulip at about 50f. Nice tan/orange brown in color. Poured easy and left yeast in bottle, decent 1 inch lace formed, lasted a while.

S - Very complex mix of dark candy and fruits and raisins.The alcohol is there in layers, very cognac like even, the sugar and spice mix well together.

T - Again very complex blend here. very sweet front end with lots of fruit of all plum like types, raisins etc, the malt and yeast add depth of candy tastes. The alcohol warmth is there but it does not overpower the beer, very nice stuff. its a strange beer its strong but its so well made it just grows on yea.

M - medium carbonation and moderately heavy body.

D - very very easy to drink more than 1 11.3 (330ml) bottle.

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Photo of jamie2dope
3.8/5  rDev -7.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3

Grabbed a marked down bottle of this at Downtown Wine and Spirits today. I like the label with the little snowman on it. It pours a murky, dark orange color, with a solid inch of white heading. Alcohol can be smelled right off the bat after the pour, along with some honey and ripe dark fruit. More of the same from the taste, which is very nectar like if that makes any sense. Mouthfeel is definitely on the hefty side, and rather hot, though I am not sure what year this bottle is. The heightened alcohol does hurt the drinkability a bit, but if you sip this one slowly, your good to go. Overall a nice Belgian beer from De Dolle. I will visit this ale again when it gets a bit colder out. Cheers

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Photo of DmanGTR
4.39/5  rDev +6.6%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Review from notes on 1/30/10. 2006 vintage, thanks to a most generous BA for sharing.

A - Poured a lovely auburn brown with a beige head that left decent lacing. Hazy/cloudy. 3.5

S - Lots of dark and light fruits. Pears, apricots, and plums come to mind, maybe a tiny bit of raisin too. Hint of brandy possibly? Characteristic Belgian spiciness. Alcohol, although subdued. 4.5

T - Layers and layers of complexities. Every aroma detected was tasted in each sip, maybe even a hint of carob showed up too. This is divine with none of the flavors off balance. The alcohol warmth rounded out the experience nicely. 4.5

M - Well carbonated and moderate body. Carbonation prickles the palate. 4.0

D - Most excellent indeed. I would buy this. 4.5

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Photo of abriggs1
4.89/5  rDev +18.7%
look: 4 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

Nice carbonation for such a heady brew. The smell is a combination of mead and madiera with some orange. Somehow, i don't smell a lot of boose even with it being 12%. The taste is very madeira-like more than anything else, which is right up my alley. Taking my first few sips, i guessed the alcohol content was maybe around 8-9%; 10% at the most. I was surprised to see that it was 12%. The taste of the boose is there, but it's extremely well balanced against the hops and the malt. This beer is way too drinkable for how strong it is. I know I should sip it carefully with my pinky stuck out, but I can't help but take one big sip after another. This is truly a magical beer, even by De Dolle's standards.

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Photo of smcolw
3.89/5  rDev -5.6%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Modest head that settles quickly to a single layer of tiny bubbles. It does leaves some slippery lace that cascades down the glass slowly. The broth is a muddy orange-brown.

Lots of sweet syrupy brown sugar aroma. Reminds me of oxidized madeira. Definitive warming alcohol.

VERY sweet, perhaps the sweetest brew I've ever had. Light hop in the swallow but the aftertaste is all alcohol. The body is like watered down syrup, or in another words: It's very rich beer with a consistency of light cream. The flavor has a port-like quality.

No way it could be anyone's everyday beer, but it is an easy sipping beer.

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Photo of BTPete
3.9/5  rDev -5.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

12 oz bottle to tulip.

A: Rusty amber color. Lost of bubbles at base of tulip and 1 cm head on top.

S: Smells of dark fruit, almost vinous in a way. Also smells sweet.

T: Is once again dark fruit, bready, malty, boozy and a little bitter. I also pick up a little bit of spice in there, maybe from the yeast.

M: Medium to full bodied. Good carbonation.

D: Although sweet and a little boozy this is a really pleasant sipper, especially at 12%. Too much would upset my stomach though.

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Photo of SourBatchKid
4.17/5  rDev +1.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

A- Golden cloudy cider but when i light of the sun hits it you can pick up specks of glistening amber. Such a thick head with a touch of lacing thats so fluffy i think it might just hold me.

S- Mmmm honey and booze at first, then i get smacked in the face with yeasty bread, followed by the presence of tropical fruits. Bananas, star fruit and mango, I am digg'n this brew.

T- This taste so fruity its beginning to make me question my sexual orientation. HA! But really, now that i taste it it reminds me of more of southern fruits like peach's and apricot then the tropical fruits i smell. Almost reminds me a an ice wine, almost.

M- The carbonation screams method champ. Extremely smooth, sweet and buttery with a slightly dry finish.

D- I am into it for sure. The complexity of this beer will keep me going back for more.

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Photo of AgentZero
3.42/5  rDev -17%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 2.5

A - Burnt golden color, somewhat hazy, huge head with a multitude of bubble sizes, fizzed up really quickly.

S - Tons of honey, cherries, spice, very fruity and sweet.

T - Exceptionally rich in flavor. The honey and raisins are almost overpowering. Nice fruity taste, little chaulky.

M - Medium body with a high dose of carbonation leads some bite to this.

D - Just too hard for me to drink as it was so rich, need something to cut the sweetness and depth of this, food, or something else.

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Photo of flagmantho
4.27/5  rDev +3.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Poured from 330mL bottle into a tulip. Cap says this was bottled October 2009.

Appearance: rich, slightly cloudy cidery hue. It is definitely toward the lighter side of a BSDA. Head is a finger of tan-ivory foam which looks to be sticking around.

Smell: very nice tree-fruit aromas of apple and pear backed with a little raisin and plum. There are also just a hints of tartness and chalk in the aroma. It's heady and quite delicious-smelling. Great.

Taste: sweet, bitter, a little chalky and even a little tart at the end. Big malt flavor profile with a little more emphasis on brightness than heady tree fruit (also, I think the alcohol is contributing some brightness here). The little bit of chalk helps balance the overall effect. Quite good.

Mouthfeel: nice medium body with a large helping of nice carbonation creates a wonderful creaminess. You know I love it.

Drinkability: exceptionally drinkable, especially considering its larger-than-life ABV. While I think there are some imperfections in the flavor, it's still very good and has a helluva lot going for it.

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Photo of bum732
3.99/5  rDev -3.2%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Pours a cloudy burnt orange, not much head. Smells of dark caramel, some belgian spice, pear and apple, touch of lavender, slight dark fruits. Tastes of spicy clove off the bat followed by more spicy malt. Cinnamon, nutmeg, some pear persists. Spicy bitterness leads to a shot of cinnamon sugar before drying slightly. Nice creamy texture with low carbonation. Alcohol slightly detectable.

A very solid beer, the more belgians i have, the more i realize that there aren't enough categories for them, perhaps that is the point. Really loved the nose on this, taste didn't quite meet expectations, but still very good nonetheless.

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Photo of LordAdmNelson
3.77/5  rDev -8.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Pours a hazy golden color, not what I was expecting for a BSDA. Big white head, decent lacing. Smell is almost sour, some big yeasty notes, some lemon zest, a hint of darker fruit, some clove and some booze. Taste is more BSDA like--clove, banana, dark fruit, yeast, and unfortunately a lot of booze. Medium mouthfeel, not as big as I would like, drinkability is ok, but the phenol/booze content here kind of slows it down for me. I might have to revisit it.

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Photo of brewcrew76
3.78/5  rDev -8.3%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Bottled Oct 2009

A - Rich, cloudy, amber, rust color with a thin off white head that leaves a thin layer of fluff on top.

S - Spice, honey, star anise, bready malt, sweet caramel and fruit.

T - Sweet and fruity, bready malts, candy sugar, honey and spice.

M - Medium body with good carbonation and linger spicy sweetness.

D - ABV blends nicely at 12%.

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Photo of RuudJH
4.07/5  rDev -1.2%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Last bottle in the shop, this 'silent night 2009', I guess, christmas beer, bought early april.

Copper colour, decent head, good carbonation, floaty bits too.

Hoppy ale. Strong bitter, with maltsweetness and yeast. Slightly boozy too.
This is a wild ale, spicy, herby and bitter. Bittersweet aftertaste.

The strong alcohol, not characteristic of this brewery. Maybe too much.
However, the bitter is awesome enough to balance it.

Not my favourite ale from the mad brewers, but it's good.

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Photo of dasenebler
4.32/5  rDev +4.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

2009 bottling. Poured into a Rochefort chalice.

Pours a tawny copper, with some definite yeast floaties. Chosen glassware inhibited the usually ridiculous De Dolle head. Here it's a modest lawyer of foam.

Aroma is huge and fruity with tons of yeasty esters. I get banana, candied apple, peach and a hefty boozy presence.

Flavor is full of that signature De Dolle fruitiness and a delicious, wine-like alcohol character. Aftertaste is dry compared to the sweet, succulent fruitiness. Finish reminiscent of champagne. The overall profile is intense, but not overpowering. Mouthfeel is pretty effervescent, though not in any way overcarbonated. Oh boy is this a sipper; a nightcap, really. Very warming.

All of De Dolle's beers are big Belgians, but this one takes the cake in terms of intensity. Would love to put some age on a few bottles.

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Photo of UA8
4.12/5  rDev 0%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A- pours a dark and murky copper color with a thin khaki colored with which fades into thick lacing and puddly foam.

S- boozy peach and apricot notes, prominent fruity and spicey yeast, sweet floral honey and caramel.

T- leads with huge juicy and sweet peach, apricot, and fleshy white grapes. Midpalate develops the complex fruity and spicey yeast notes. Finishes with candied fruit schnapps booziness.

M- sweet and syrupy medium body with a coarse moderate carbonation.

D- a big and complex bsda. Run a tad a on the sweet side but it is a holiday beer so compliments the season well with it big abv and spicy flavors. Think I'll buy a couple of these to age seems like the potential for even greater complexity is very good.

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Photo of ChainGangGuy
4/5  rDev -2.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Appearance: Pours out a clearish, dark amber body with a somewhat small-sized, off-white head.

Smell: Sweet-scented, boldly fruity nose with a notes of sugary dessert toppings, earthy spices, and fruit-flavored cordials.

Taste: Starts with a dense, sugary sweetness with hints of well-caramelized sugars and heady honey. Slightly toasty. A melange of fruit flavors passes by: apricot, grape skins, raisins. Scant bitterness is briefly felt, as are some spicy accents akin to cinnamon and nutmegs. Fairly yeasty throughout. A couple drops of orange liqueur. Finishes dry and a bit hot.

Mouthfeel: Medium-plus body, notably smooth. Medium-light carbonation.

Drinkability: Pretty solid. With the intensity of a strong, sweet brew, it's definitely a slow-sipper for me and the small, singular bottle is more than plenty.

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Photo of sisuspeed
4.13/5  rDev +0.2%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Bottled Oct 2009

Poured into a snifter, Stille Nacht produces a hazy, apricot-orange body with suspended yeast. A thin, white head slowly fades to a decent sized ring around the glass. Light lacing.

Belgian yeast and spice on the nose, followed by licorice and ethyl-alcohol laced fruits. Apples and lighter fruits mainly. Alcohol is a little more dominant than I would like, but still pretty good.

Sweet, bready malts and honey in the taste. Lighter fruits, pears, apples. Fairly rich and sweet. A little flowery. Spice is on the lighter side. Quite tasty.

Mouthfeel is nice and smooth. Malty, warming and balanced with light carbonation. Well done.

Drinkability is good. I'm really enjoying the glass I have, but each sip brings about a decent amount of alcohol in the nose. Surprisingly though, the ABV is pretty well masked in the flavor. So all in all, sipping on this one is quite pleasant.

Overall, this is a great Belgain brew. Sweet and malty with light fruits. This is my second time trying this and I've enjoyed it quite a bit both times. Really glad I have another bottle to age in the cellar. Worth seeking out.

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Photo of MPLS
4.7/5  rDev +14.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

Thanks to Bosse for this one - 2003 vintage and with spring on our heels this one was split amongst friends along with many other beers, outside.

A: Lighter in color than expected, a gentle pour leaves plenty of yeast in the bottle and comes out a nice murky dark golden brown. Carbonation still present, but mellow.

S: The smell is sweet and hard to describe initially, it's fruity and screams of Belgian sugars. The sugars remind me of butterscotch and brown sugar.

T: Layers and layers of sweetness @ 12%? What is there secret, it's immaculately hidden amongst the toffee, butterscotch, vinous qualities, brown sugar, yeast, raisins, and who knows what else my tongue is tasting. Amazing beer.

M: It's very big bodied, slight warming, and trace carbonation plays on the tongue nicely.

D: Both bottles are gone out this, but damn, a great beer with this much age on it.

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Photo of ohoh
4.4/5  rDev +6.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.5

I shared a 330ml bottle with a friend after dinner, watching Champions. Not your usual football beer, but it's a favourite of ours and we couldn't wait. Bought at Ölbutikken. This is a 2003 bottle.

Pours deep, hazy amber. Not much foam, but lots of little rests on the glass. It feels rather viscous, a tiny like De Molen Bommen & Granaten but not nearly as much.

Smell is restrained. You can definitely hint what's coming up next but the taste is a real bomb! Very rich. On the sweet side, I can taste plums, raisins. I expect a jolt of sweetness but the aftertaste is mild and quite dry which balances it up a lot and gives it a great mouthfeel accompanied with lots of tiny, rather aggressive bubbles. Drinkability is excellent.

This beer has certainly become very elegant over the years and the 12% are well hidden. The 45 DKK (~4€) we paid were money very well spent. This is truly a five star beer.

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Photo of Jesstyr
4.33/5  rDev +5.1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Found this bottle at Whole Foods in NYC. Bottled on date Oct 2009. Served in a Orval chalice.

Pours an interesting cloudy orange and amber with a lot of sediment floating about. Head is a perfect 2cm and lacing is excellent. Nose is very strong apricot with definitive notes of strong belgian sugar.

Taste is unbelievably dynamic, lots going on, almost too much. There is a definite malty base which is where this all begins. Apricot or subtle citrus fruit is the next phase of this, with pear. Tart brown sugar, and a hint of red wine, which is why my fiance loves this brew. Wow - I think this might have everything. Medium body with subtle alcohol bite, but hidden. Exceptionally drinkable, which is scary considering the high ABV.

Try this beer, a delight.

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De Dolle Stille Nacht from Brouwerij De Dolle Brouwers
4.12 out of 5 based on 1,047 ratings.
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